Blackhawks tied Western Conference Final with Game 4 double-overtime win, plus the latest on Ben Bishop J.T. Miller, Vladimir Sobotka and more.
Stanley Cup Playoffs Headlines.
CHICAGO SUN-TIMES/ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Antoine Vermette, a healthy scratch in Game Three, was the hero in Game Four as he scored in double-overtime to give the Chicago Blackhawks a 5-4 victory over the Anaheim Ducks, tying their Western Conference Final at two games apiece. A wild third period set the stage for Vermette’s heroics, as the Blackhawks took a 3-1 lead, fell behind 4-3 as the Ducks scored three goals within 37 seconds and rallied to tie the game on a power-play goal by Patrick Kane.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That was one of the strangest third periods of playoff hockey I’ve ever seen. The ‘Hawks seemed to have this game in the bag after taking a 3-1 lead. I can’t recall a faster flurry of goals in a postseason game like those scored by the Ducks, who appeared to have the Blackhawks reeling until Kane’s game-tying goal.
THE TAMPA TRIBUNE: Despite the recent struggles of Lightning goalie Ben Bishop, coach Jon Cooper dismissed the idea of sitting his starter, calling the question “asinine” and “ludicrous.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Yes, Bishop allowed 10 goals in two games, but he also won one of those games. Just as the Rangers did with Henrik Lundqvist following his difficulties in Games Two and Three, so the Lightning will stick with Bishop.
NEW YORK POST: J.T. Miller has done a fine job filling in for sidelined Rangers winger Mats Zuccarello.
Other Notable NHL Headlines.
FORBES.COM: The NHL has refinanced about $85 million of the Arizona Coyotes’ debt, which was at the center of a possible attempt by the city of Glendale to get out of its lease with the Coyotes.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Whether you love or hate NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and regardless of what you think of the viability of NHL hockey in Arizona, you’ve got to admit he can be a shrewd operator.
CSNNE.COM: The first order of business for the Boston Bruins new GM Don Sweeney is determining the fate of head coach Claude Julien. Sources suggest Julien could remain in his job.
STLTODAY.COM: Vladimir Sobotka has until the end of this month to decide if he’ll return to the NHL and the Blues next season or play another season with Avangard Omsk of the KHL.